The Royals also announced that the contracts of bench coach Chino Cadahia and third-base/infield coach Eddie Rodriguez were not renewed. Cadahia was offered a chance to be reassigned within the organization.
Sveum coached on Royals manager Ned Yost's staff for three years when Yost was the Milwaukee Brewers' manager.
"He's going to coach the infielders, and then we're going to determine if he's going to be the third-base coach or the bench coach," Yost said. "He's performed both of those for me before in Milwaukee and did a heck of a job in both spots."
Yost said the other four coaches -- pitching coach Dave Eiland, hitting coach Pedro Grifol, first-base and outfield coach Rusty Kuntz, and bullpen coach Doug Henry -- would return.
That leaves two positions open. The coaching staff can number seven, but after the departure of interim hitting coach George Brett in late July, there were only six on the full-time staff.
What duties the other two coaches might have was undetermined.
"We'll see," Yost said. "We're working on different scenarios."
Sveum, 49, was the Cubs' manager for the last two years after six years on the Brewers' coaching staff. It was Sveum who became the Brewers' interim manager on Sept. 15, 2008, when Yost was dismissed before the team won the National League Wild Card berth.
Sveum also was a third-base coach for the Boston Red Sox for two years, including their World Series championship season of 2004. He was a Major League infielder for 12 years with the Brewers, Phillies, White Sox, A's, Mariners, Pirates and Yankees, spanning 1986-1998.
"He's a great guy and a great teacher," Yost said. "When I hired him, Robin Yount came with him and Robin told me -- and I didn't know Dale -- that he'd be the best coach you ever had, and he was right. He was phenomenal, he was on top of everything, paid attention to the detail, was a tremendous teacher and helped develop all those young infielders over there. Did a great job in everything I asked him to do."
Rodriguez, 54, was on the Royals' coaching staff for five years. Cadahia, 55, was the bench coach for the last two years but missed the last month of this season because of a family matter.
The Royals began the season with Jack Maloof as hitting coach and Andre David as his assistant, but they were dismissed on May 30 when Brett and Grifol took their spots. This was the first year that the Royals had two hitting coaches on the staff.